Tag: Spider Bags
I first heard about Spider Bags at Bull City Headquarters in Durham. I had gone to see a friend play with a band called Titus Andronicus. A few songs in, the leader singer says, “This is a song by the greatest band in the world — Spider Bags,” and preceded to sing Waking Up Drunk.
Now, if you were at this show you would probably remind me that Spider Bags themselves had played that night, but I got lost on the way to the venue and missed the set. Nevertheless, I made sure to look up this so called “greatest band in the world” — and you know what? Titus Andronicus wasn’t far off.
Spider Bags is made up of long time friends Dan McGee and Gregg Levy, two Jersey boys who magically ended up in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Rock Forbes from the band Bad Checks is the drummer. The band themselves formed in 2006 and have been growing ever since.
Their tunes themselves sound like southern, gritty rock and roll with lyrics that consist of drugs, booze and just livin’ the hard life. Now there have been thousands of bands that have all sung the same tunes but some how Spider Bags figured it out. The mix sloppy with unique and transfix the listener with the sounds they are creating.
Spider Bags not only writes incredible music, they also put on an incredible live show. Comparable to other local favorite Red Collar,the band never lacks on emotion and energy. They can induce their audience to scream, shout or even cry.
This year the band released “Goodbye Cruel, Hello Crueler One” on Birdman records.
For the complete Double Barrel schedule and ticket information, click here.
by DJ Kligz on Jan.19, 2010, under Local
Back in 2006, Roman Candle’s release of The Wee Hours Revue impressed listeners everywhere with the excellent songwriting and catchy pop-rock present in the album. It was a personal favorite in high school and everyone who received the album from me became an immediate fan. Pitchfork gave it a 7.6 out of 10 and Paste Magazine a 4.5 out of 5. Since then, Roman Candle fans everywhere have anticipated the release of a new album to love. Enter Oh Tall Tree In The Ear, the long awaited 2009 LP.
This most recent album is everything that listeners have been craving, a “modern rock masterpiece” as told by Paste Magazine. “Oh Tall Tree In The Ear” is a breath of fresh air; it’s catchy, foot tappin’ music that’s good to its core. Don’t believe me? Just take a look at the reviews the album has gotten. Pop Matters has given Roman Candle’s newest effort a 9 out of 10 and Daytrotter describes the music as “tearing us out of the present, despite such modern feels and scents,” and I tend to agree. Listening to “Oh Tall Tree In The Ear” is an experience, a period of time where the listener can get away from their hectic life and escape, escape to the world of Skip Matheny’s vocals and Roman Candle’s melodies.
We at WKNC are very excited about having Roman Candle back in the Triangle to play in the Double Barrel Benefit 7. You may recognize Roman Candle if you went to the N.C. State Pack Howl homecoming concert in September 2009. The band will take the stage at The Pour House on Saturday, February 6 as the headliner of night two of the benefit. Bands The Tender Fruit, Midtown Dickens and Spider Bags will kick off the night.
For the complete Double Barrel schedule and ticket information, click here.
WKNC 88.1 FM will hold its annual Double Barrel Benefit Friday, Feb. 5 and Saturday, Feb. 6 at The Pour House Music Hall. The station’s seventh installment of the two-night concert will be feature Max Indian and Roman Candle.
Both headliners performed on the North Carolina State University campus in the fall. Max Indian played with Double Barrel Benefit alumni Schooner at the station’s October Fridays on the Lawn concert series and Roman Candle played the Pack Howl concert and pep rally during November.
Tickets are on sale now through wknc.org and the-pour-house.com. Prices are $7 in advance and $9 at the door for each night and all proceeds benefit WKNC. Two-night passes are also available at Schoolkids in Raleigh. The event is 18+, with an additional surcharge for patrons under 21. Doors for each show open at 8 p.m. with music at 9 p.m.
Our amazing poster was designed by Kirsten Southwell of Bad Apple Design.
2009 was one hell of a year for WKNC and for North Carolina music. On our end, we had the sad departure of local radio legend DJ Stevo (you can still hear him broadcasting over at taintradio.org) but also the beginning of something new with myself taking over the Local Beat in August after DJ Mick provided a couple months of Friday evening entertainment. We have also added to our ranks several different Local Lunch DJs who have all been doing a fantastic job of providing you with non-stop local music every weekday from noon to 1 p.m.
In the local music spectra of our community, many new bands have made their way onto the scene while others have begun establishing themselves as some of the premiere musicians in the country. Still, other groups broke up or left our region for better or for worse. Even some unfamiliar venues have begun making their mark in this region. Some amazing shows have been played and become ingrained in the memories of many and there is no doubt that more and more people within our community have been tuning into to the amazing local music this part of the country offers.
As it is a common trend in nearly every aspect of our culture at the end of the year to create some sort of countdown list in remembrance of the past 12 months many local blogs, newspapers, and magazines have been ranking their top bands, albums, and songs from 2009.
Not to be outdone, I have been preparing for this list throughout the year and after listening to every second of every song on all 154 albums that have been sent my way by local bands and artists (an exhausting feat that nearly killed my GPA). I have whittled my way down to my top 10. In total, I have listened to more than 1,400 local songs culminating in just less than 74 hours worth of North Carolina music from 2009. Many of these albums and bands are unfortunately not worth mentioning but after much debate I worked my way down to 38 records that in my mind would qualify as top-10 material.
First to be chocked off were EPs. Certainly, the Tomahawks Like a Horse on a Beach EP was one of the finest groupings of four songs I had the pleasure to listen to, and Violet Vector’s EP II could have made the cut, along with Aminal’s A Face To Fight EP, Mandolin Orange’s self titled EP, and Veelee’s Three Sides EP among others, but I feel that LPs are the ones that truly stand the test of time.
Second to go were the compilations. Hear Here will remain my number one album of 2009, but it is difficult to split the award to all 17 of those bands. I also always enjoy the Have a Holly Raleigh Kidsmas volumes but putting a holiday album on the list didn’t seem quite right either.
I finally worked my way down to the last two dozen or so and that is where things began to get difficult. I may never fully forgive myself for excluding I Was Totally Destroying It’s release Horro Vacui and I have no excuse for not including it. That album kicks serious ass. As does Americans in France’s Pretzelvania, Bowerbirds’ Upper Air, Calico Haunts’ After All, Hammer No More The Fingers’ Looking For Bruce, Old Ceremony’s Walk on Thin Air, Ryan Gustafson’s Donkey, and many others that unfortunately were not included (I will stop before I start second guessing myself). In any case, after much rambling here it is:
10. The Bronzed Chorus: I’m The Spring
This duo out of Greensboro has seemingly come out of nowhere in the past two years. Since recording their independently released debut thurtythurty in Adam Joyce’s bedroom, Joyce and band mate Brennan O’Brien have taken the state by storm after signing to Hello Sir Records and promptly putting out the masterpiece that is I’m the Spring. Post-rock noise ecstasy combines with powerful imagery of storms of overdriven guitar and bass pounding the skies with an untamed fury. The effect of two musicians creating such a visual component to their music speaks volumes of what this album truly is: art. Stay on your toes throughout this album and try not to miss a note, you won’t come back down after hearing this. More Reviews:
9. Starmount: Tyranny of the Sphere
Here is another instrumental album that cracked my top 10, the debut album from a newly discovered band from right here in Raleigh. Starmount is one of the most unique bands I have ever heard and likely ever will with their blending of pedal steel guitar, upright bass, synthesizers, and a drum/electronics kit to make quite an uncommon yet entrancing sound. Already signed to Superfan records, this album has begun making it’s mark on the community even if the group only plays a couple of times a year. To keep it short and simple, Starmount is a band that I cannot relate with another group but one which I will now begin to compare bands to. Their music is one of a kind and this album speaks volumes about the progressive and evolving nature of music. In my opinion, the best way to listen to this record is go sit in a dark room, turn the music up loud and let it wash over you like a fresh cool breeze.
8. Polvo: In Prism
I will be the first to line up and shamefully admit that I was never a big fan of Polvo. The fact of the matter is that I never really gave them a chance. However, after watching them at the Double Barrel Benefit back in February I was converted and anxiously awaited their new album after news of them hitting the studio began to spread. What resulted was one of the grandest vindications of the year.
In Prism was Polvo’s first album in 12 years, but boy did they come back with a vengeance. Classified from anywhere to Math Rock, post-hardcore, to psychedelic, you can put them in whatever genre you like, but to me Polvo and especially this record stands to no-one’s label but their own. The entire album plays seamlessly like a single beating entity whose life unfolds out to you through each track as it’s own but also as a part of the whole organic form Polvo creates. Call me a noob to their works but In Prism is one of the finest, if not best album of the Polvo catalog. Here are a couple of reviews to dignify my claim:
7. Lonnie Walker: These Times Old Times
I remember the first time I saw Lonnie Walker at the Terpsikhore Collective Leap Year Extravaganza back in 2008. They played alongside IWTDI and Annuals, two of the best bands in the Southeast, but it was Lonnie Walker who stole the show and the hearts of everyone in the crowd that night. Stevo and I harassed lead singer Brian Corum that night and he brought a demo to WKNC the next week. The rest they say, is history.
These Times Old Times contains several remakes of the same songs from that first demo but also quite a few newer tracks as well. The whole album is reminiscent of Bob Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks but a bit hardier and with a more intense rock ‘n roll feel while still keeping that same folky edge that they are known for. Tunes like “Grapefruit”, “Back Home Inside With You”, and “Crochet” add on to the already set LW standards and are surrounded by short sentimental ditties like “Old Birds In The Seas”, “Horse Boots”, and “Country Crowded Trees” to create an album that never gets old after each listen. The effect of their debut release was immediate as they were one of the top headliners for Artsplosure ’09 and named Ear Farm’s band of the week back in August and are now one of the most sought after live shows in the state for fans.
6. Avett Brothers: I and Love and You
It is becoming difficult for me to label the Avett Brothers as a local band in the past two years only because they tour so god damn much. But these boys out of Concord have without a doubt become the shining beacon of North Carolina music in recent years and are obviously the most successful group in the past 10 years from our state. I and Love and You is their most recent output, their major label debut, and without question their best since forming in 2000. Known for their heartfelt and emotional songs as well as their raucous and mesmerizing live performances this album captures all of those things better than any other. It has the ability to make your hair stand on end through one sentimental song and then the next throws you into a whirlwind of acoustic picking heaven.
Many questioned the Avett’s move to a larger label after the band promised to stay close to their roots but one listen to this record, produced by music legend Rick Rubin, proves the move right. Just check out some of the reviews below:
To prove the Bros. success over the past 9 years I and Love and You peaked at #16 on the Billboard 200 best selling albums, #8 in best selling digital albums, and #7 in rock albums. Point proven.
5. Midtown Dickens: Lanterns
Much to my surprise this album dropped to number 5 on my list for when I first gave it a listen I was sure it would be in my top 3. The two women (Kym and Catherine) founded their group back in 2005 have now expanded the band into a sextet after adding four of their best friends to play alongside them. What results from this addition is a fuller and more satisfying full band sound to back their already magnificent song writing and singing skills. Midtown Dickens is fun and enjoyable to listen to halfheartedly but once you take them seriously the music just opens up into something deeper and more profound than most bands can pull off. Grab the album and take a seat because listening to Lanterns might knock you flat out.
4. Megafaun: Gather, Form, and Fly
If you have ever seen Megafaun live you will know what I mean when I confess that watching these guys play is like having a deep religious experience. So believe me when I say that listening to Gather, Form, and Fly is nothing short of transcending. Megafaun has always been terrific whether as the original lineup of DeYarmond Edison before the split or on their first album Bury The Square, so it is difficult to say they have “matured.” I prefer the word “evolved” instead as Megafaun has taken their already well-developed earthy sound and transformed it into music so beautiful and sententious that the sheer vastness of the sound is almost indescribable. This album moves and breathes around you as you listen to it almost as if the whole world starts opening itself up to a Megafaun induced dream.
3. Luego: Taped-Together Stories
A second reincarnation of this band Simply put Luego is the catchiest band around. With Patrick Phelan heading the gang and welcoming the likes of Jeff Crawford, Peter Holsapple, Nick Jaeger, Rob DiMauro, Cameron Lee, and Charles Cleaver Luego is as close to a local music supergroup as one might find. Taped-Together Stories is a one of a kind in today’s music world with personal and heartfelt lyrics that anyone with a soul can relate to combined with bluesy rock/pop and craftily set beats that are easy to move your feet to all underneath Phelan’s raspy and grabbing vocals. It’s all based off of that fun jangly pop and lo-fi production technique so popular among bands in our area (ie: Max Indian) but with an indie spark to complete the album’s character. Simply put, it’s the catchiest local album of the year. In 20 years this will be one of those albums you look back on and say “I was there.”
2. Horseback: The Invisible Mountain
As difficult as it is to describe this album, I am going to try, so bear with me as I fail to give this album it’s due indulgence. Only four songs long, this masterpiece takes on 38 minutes of grinding harsh satanic laced vociferations backed by acrid droning that comes together like a choir of demons singing straight from the pits of hell. It’s dark, malicious, and pierces the soul with a pointed tip but finally salvation is granted in the form of the nearly 17 minute finale “Hatecloud Dissolving into Nothing”, one of the most breathtaking and articulate pieces of instrumentation to grace my well worn ears. Its beautiful, heart wrenching, and sincere. Every note on this album is well placed and delicate to the overall fabric of the sound, nothing is taken for granted and nothing is overdone. It’s perfect.
After listening to this album for the first time I found myself sitting on the edge of my bed staring at nothing for almost an hour trying to absorb what I had just heard. Do yourself a favor and give this a try.
1. Bombadil: Tarpits and Canyonlands
After hearing the first and then second song from Bombadil’s new album I knew that all of my expectations for it were going to be fulfilled. After the eighth song I realized that this might be the best album of 2009. After the third or fourth listen to Tarpits and Cayonlands it occurred to me that this album was one of the greatest records I had ever heard. Few albums have ever reached me quite like Tarpits has and I am having a difficult time writing this piece so that it fully encompasses my true
The first review I ever read on Bombadil was after their first EP came out. The review read “It sound’s like a group of hobbits from Durham got together and made some kickass folk music.” Nothing could have been truer then. Their songs were joyful expressions of life and bewilderment and innocence at the world. Listening to their old stuff makes you want to kick off your shoes and go frolicking in a grassy field next to a lazy stream. But as Tarpits and Canyonlands, their second full length began to emerge through live performances and hearsay I knew that this album would be different. Many critics will ramble about the tides and maturation of bands and either bombast their new ways or extol progressive features from album to album. Overall it really is what the band decides to do with their sound that makes a difference. Fortunately for us, in Tarpits Bombadil did very little to their style. The upbeat melodies and piano heavy chords are still wrapped in their folk tinged harmonies and buoyant vocals, but something is different, something hard to put your finger on. What arises is a sense of depth and emotion lacking from their previous works, a sense of death and not just life, of powerful heartbreak arising from potent love, of creating a fulfilled legacy, and a justification to experience all of these sensations without remorse.
When I first heard the album back in April I could not stop listening over and over. It’s a work that speaks to each person in their own individual way and makes its mark on the listener. From the ever present goosebumps during the very first song “I Am” through the seemingly drifting ‘Kuala Lumpur” (my personal favorite) all the way to the final four songs of redemption, loss, and ultimate love, Bombadil grabs you by the ears and the mind and takes you on a journey of illumination and enlightenment.
Overall this masterpiece is nothing short of lyrical genius coinciding with instrumentation that matches the mood perfectly. If you enjoyed their old albums, you will find this better. If you never did like Bombadil before, this one will grab you. Tarpits and Canyonlands isn’t just the best local album of 2009, it is one of the best album of any regard in the past decade.
Below is a brief list of my top 10 Local albums of 2009 as well as DJ Ray’s my awesome assistant in the Local Music department at WKNC:
|Adam Kincaid’s Top 10 Local Albums||DJ Ray’s Top 10 Local Albums|
|1.Bomadil: Tarpits & Canyonlands
2.Horseback: The Invisible Mountain
3.Luego: Taped-Together Stories
4.Megafaun: Gather, Form, & Fly
5.Midtown Dickens: Lanterns
6.Avett Brothers: I and Love and You
7.Lonnie Walker: These Times Old Times
8.Polvo: In Prism
9.Starmount: Tyranny of the Sphere
10.Bronzed Chorus: I’m the Spring
|1.Bomadil: Tarpits & Canyonlands
2.Megafaun: Gather, Form and Fly
3.Lonnie Walker: These Times Old Times
4.Hammer No More the Fingers: Looking for Bruce
5.Bowerbirds: Upper Air
6.Americans in France: Pretzelvania
7.You and Your Effects: Wire Sharks
8.Midtown Dickens: Lanterns
9.Bronzed Chorus: I’m the Spring
10.Spider Bags: Goodbye Cruel World, Hello Crueler World
It’s that time of year again.
Year-end best-of lists will be popping up all over the internet and magazines this month, with varying opinions on who had the best record, song, music video, live show, etc. etc.
The music-related website Pitchfork, however, is offering music fans the opportunity to pick their favorites in their annual Readers’ Poll. And a few local acts have made their longlist of nominees in a couple of categories. Chapel Hill country-rock band band Spider Bags are nominated for Best New Artist.
Raleigh’s own experimental folk group Megafaun‘s fantastic second record, Gather, Form & Fly, is nominated for Most Underrated Album.
Chapel Hill guitar heroes Polvo are up for Best Reunion/Comeback.
And last, but certainly not least, Greenville ex-pats Future Islands, who also recently signed to Thrill Jockey, are up for Best Hope For 2010. So take a few minutes off from whatever you’re doing to waste time at work and head over to 2k9survey.pitchfork.com and help support some fantastic, home-grown music.
And while we’re on the subject of nominations, North Carolina hip-hop and soul group The Foreign Exchange have been nominated for a Grammy for Best Urban/Alternative Performance for the track “Daykeeper” off of their recently released sophomore effort Leave It All Behind. Durham-via-Mali kora player Mamadou Diabaté is also up for Best Traditional World Music Album for his record Douga Mansa.
This Top 10 comes from Durham’s Red Collar.
Red Collar has had a fascinating year so far. Its members decided to grasp their dreams by quitting their great 9 to 5 jobs, cashing in retirement plans, holding yard sales and almost putting a home on the market in order to follow their dreams of touring. They document their journey on their blog.
Below are the lists of what each member is currently listening to. Red Collar said, “These lists of music reflect not only what we’re listening to now but bands we’ve played with over the past year. There are local — now national — bands whose lead we admired and followed. There are local — and soon to be national — bands who we love and trade war stories with.”
1. Tom Waits – “Going Out West”
2. The Gaslight Anthem “The High and Lonesome Sound”
3. The Love Language – “Stars”
4. Des Ark - “Lord of the Rings and his Fascist Time Keepers”
5. Yo La Tengo – “I feel like going home”
6. Jawbox – “Savory”
7. K’Naan – “Dusty Foot Philosopher”
8. David Dondero – “the Real Tina Turner”
9. CCR – “Long as I Can See the Light”
10. Carole King “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow”
1. Megafaun – “Gather, Form and Fly”
2. Spoon – “Everything Hits at Once”
3. Joe Tex “Papa was Too”
4. Sonic Youth – “Teenage Riot”
5. Bon Iver – “Skinny Love”
6. American Aquarium – “Katherine Belle”
7. TV on the Radio – “Shout Me Out”
8. Spider Bags – “Teenage Eyes”
9. Hammer No More the Fingers – “Shutterbug”
10. Modest Mouse – “Broke”
Jason: Lead Vocals/Guitar
1. The Love Language – “Providence”
2. Hammer No More the Fingers – “Some Bad Ass New Song”
3. The Sandwiches - “And Out Come the (Timber) Wolves”
4. American Aquarium – “Katherine Belle”
5. Dave Dondero – “The Real Tina Turner”
6. I Was Totally Destroying It – “Come Out, Come Out”
7. Look Mexico – “You’re Not Afraid of the Dark, Are You?”
8. Worn in Red – “When People Have Something to Say”
9. Tooth/Claw Split 10″
10. The Mountain Goats – “This Year”
1. The Pogues – “Bottle of Smoke”
2. Ben Nichols – “Last Pale Light in the West”
3. Guided By Voices – “A Good Flying Bird”
4. Modest Mouse – “Dashboard”
5. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds – “Jack the Ripper”
6. Glenn Kotche – “Mobile, Pts. 1 & 2″
7. The Clash “Straight to Hell”
8. Townes Van Zandt – “Lungs”
9. Bela Fleck - “Matitu”
10. Wilco -”One Wing”
And also this video…
by Sweet Melissa on Oct.13, 2009, under Promotions
Listen in to 88.1 WKNC for your chance to win tickets to the following shows happening this week:
Tuesday October 13:
Thursday October 15:
Friday October 16:
Saturday October 17:
Jay Love Reggae Festival @ Lincoln Theatre
Be sure to check out more local shows on The Rock Report and listen in for your chance to win tickets to shows this week!